James Rhodes Coffelt was born at Hixson, Tennessee, the son of Walter Foster Coffelt and Augusta Duncan. Husband of Stella Higgins.
Staff Sergeant James R. Coffelt, US Army Air Forces, was assigned to the 330th Bomber Squadron, 93rd Bomber Group Heavy, flying B-24’s out of Gambut, Libya.
SSgt Coffelt was killed in action 15 February 1943, he is remembered on the Tablets of the Missing, Sicily-Rome American Cemetery, Nettuno, Italy.
Aircraft B-24D with serial number 41-23675 was hit by flak over Naples, they fought the fighter off with all their guns firing, when last seen this ship was headed for the coast of Italy.
A message from Cairo to AGWAR, dated 23 February 1943, casualty branch no. 055030, lists this crew as missing in action while on an operational flight.
Pilot, Captain Charles T. Moore
Co-Pilot, 1st Lt Robert L. Brown
1st Lt Harold R. Tushla
1st Lt John F. Paschal Jr.
T/Sgt Walter D. Smith
T/Sgt Augustus B. Thompson
S/Sgt Harry R. Robinson
S/Sgt Benjamin J. Luglio
S/Sgt Clifton E. Dennis Jr.
S/Sgt James R. Coffelt
Left to right: S/Sgt. William E. Austin, Hollywood, Calif.; S/Sgt. Raymond E. Bolle, Birmingham, Ala.; Sgt. John Clement, Bell Vernon, Pa.; S/Sgt. James R. Coffelt, Hixon, Tenn. And S/Sgt. Clifton E. Dennis, Richwood, W. Va., all of whom received Air Medals
The Chattanooga Daily Times, 4 July 1943
Mrs. James R. Coffelt of Hixson, will be awarded the air medal for her husband, Staff Sgt. Coffelt who has been missing in action since Feb. 15. The medal carries three oak leaf clusters, which indicate a second, third and fourth award of the same decoration for exceptionally meritorious achievement. Sgt. Coffelt entered the army in February, 1942, and received his training at Biloxi, Miss; Shreveport, La, and Fort Myers, Fla. He went to England in August, 1942, and later to the Middle East, where he received his wings. The picture of Sgt. Coffelt on the white horse was taken in Egypt while he was on a trip with a group of friends and sent to Mrs. Coffelt. It was shortly after she receive the picture that she had notice that her husband was missing in action in North Africa. Mrs. Coffelt, who was formerly Miss Stella Higgins of Hixson, is employed at the Standard-Coosa-Thatcher Company. Sgt. Coffelt is the son of Mr. and Mrs. W.F. Coffelt of Hixson.
- Rank: Staff Sergeant
- Date of birth: 19 June 1916
- Date of death: 15 February 1943
- County: Hamilton
- Hometown: Hixson
- Service Branch: Army/Army Air Forces
- Division/Assignment: 330th Bomber Squadron, 93rd Bomber Group, Heavy
- Theater: Europe
- Conflict: World War II
- Awards: Air Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart
- Burial/Memorial Location: Sicily-Rome American Cemetery, Nettuno, Italy
- Location In Memorial: Pillar XI, Middle Panel
- Contact us to sponsor James R. Coffelt
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